Safe in Oz

Sea Mist > Sold to New Owners July 2016
John and Cheryl Ellsworth
Mon 24 Oct 2011 09:18
24 45.62 S 152 23.28 E

Arrived at the marina at 2:15 pm local time and we were allowed to go
directly into our marina berth that was ready for us....and so was the
Customs/Immigration Officer awaiting for us as we tied up .... and within a
short period of time all the formalities on the customs and immigration
aspects were complete. Could not have been more friendly and welcoming well as professionally doing his formal job of handling our entry.

We are not yet allowed off Sea Mist...we are awaiting the Quarantine
Officers to arrive for what we understand will be a very thorough and
disciplined formality.

In the meantime, let me give a brief report on our final day of the
passage....which, overall, both Cheryl and I consider to have been one of
the easiest passages so far for us.

Nothing "exciting" to report ...we did run into some significant adverse
current that set us back considerably; we were doing over 9 kts through the
water and yet only 7 kts over the bottom for a fair number of
happened twice: first was during yesterday afternoon 150 miles east of Aus,
and, the second encounter with unfavorable current was today as we
approached the Australian coastline and particularly as we entered and
crossed a bay that is 50 nm wide and you have to cross it to get to
Bungaberg.....and, as luck would have it, we were crossing it on an ebb tide
with the water flowing out of the bay against us. But we really didn't was a gorgeous blue sky day with light wind and relatively flat
boat/seas.....NICE motorsailing!!

Anyway, our 200 nm days came to an end in this final day. We made it to the
finish line just about 3 hours over the 5 days for the 1000 nm. Here is a
little nonsense trivia......but sailors do "count" so what the heck. Now as
I mentioned before, the real effort/achievement that we/Seamist could
influence is BSP (the speed of the boat through the water) and on that
count, we covered 1053 nm in the 5 days + 3 hours for an average BSP of 8.56
kts covering an average of 205.5 nm per day! The SOG (Speed Over Ground)
calculation is based on the actual GPS based 998 nm distance covered between
Luganville and Bundaberg. That leads to an average of 8.11 kts covering an
average of 194.7 nm per day.....BUT >>>> with 4 consecutive days breaking
the 200 nm threshold for Distanced Made Good to destination. That is a
record for Sea Mist; our prior record was 13 days at 192 nm average distance
made good per day when we crossed the Atlantic at the end of 2008......NOW
that was a very tough passage!...relatively speaking, this one from Vanuatu
was a breeze.

Fast Forward >>>>>> The 2 Quarantine officers have now completed their
inspection....and charged us the standard AU$330 (approx $US350) for doing
it. They lifted every soleboard and probed around with a flashlight; same
for the closets/cupboards. They examined all of the gifts/souvenirs that we
have accumulated looking for bore holes from wood eating insects. They
examined the timber making up the yacht. AND, of course, they went through
all our food supplies....taking many things such as every piece of fresh
fruit, butter/margarine that was not from NZ or Aus. However, they let us
keep our frozen prepared meals since they were cooked when created AND since
they have spent extensive time in the freezer and nothing could survive
that. Some wooden artifacts (Tongan carved wood face masks) were considered
to be potentially problematic; but since they didn't find anything, they
agreed that we could keep them if we place the 2 large masks in the freezer
and left them there for 10 days......that was a pleasant surprise...we
feared that they would seize them. They also did an extensive interview
covering question about which countries, which ports, what work was done on
the boat etc. Definitely, the Australians lead the world in this Quarantive

So we are all good!!...we can carry on and enjoy Oz til next July when we
move onwards to Indonesia and points north and west in South East Asia.

My head is falling....MUST get sleep NOW!

Cheers, the Seamisters